Mozart String Quartet no. 21 in D major 'The Violet', K. 575

The String Quartet No. 21 in D Major, K. 575, was written in June 1789 by Mozart. It has acquired the nickname The Violet. The first of the so called 'Prussian Quartet's, it was written for and dedicated to the King of Prussia, Friedrich Wilhelm II, an amateur cellist, and was written in a similar style to the quartets of Joseph Haydn. Mozart and his friend Karl Lichnowsky met the king in Potsdam in April 1789. Mozart played before the king in Berlin on 26 May 1789. This string quartet, though shadowed by the Haydn Quartets, is still a popular piece in the repertoire today. Written at the zenith of Mozart's powers as a chamber music composer, it is considered to be in a more relaxed style than his immediate previous works. This quartet features appealing melodies and the most rewarding cello parts, undoubtedly a conscious decistion by Mozart, who wanted to please the cello-playing king. A typical performance lasts around 24 minutes.
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